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22 an explosion in an area of relatively high contamination re- The highway (trucking) and rail transportation modes are sulting in the re-suspension of the particles. The second, and frequent haulers of toxic and infectious medical materials, more devastating, is the spread of contagious agent by in- while the aviation and maritime modes are less frequent car- fected individuals, as may be the case with smallpox, pneu- riers of DOT Class 6 infectious materials, and mass transit is monic plague, and some hemorrhagic fever viruses. These never a carrier of these materials. The release of a biological diseases may be spread with exhaled air from infected indi- agent during legal transport would disrupt travel along the viduals; however, during the disease stages where this is pos- specific route; however, the likelihood of widespread release sible, infected persons are usually largely bedridden at home, of dangerous material is low. If an airplane crash resulted in in hospitals, or other medical centers. Livestock foot and release of an infectious agent, it is unlikely that the hazard mouth disease may also have secondary releases caused by from this release would provide significantly more threat to contagiousness. Contagious diseases in particular may have the personnel. Standard fire suppression techniques would a significant effect on transportation, which may be restricted minimize the chance of aerosolization. Because of the small or stopped to isolate either clean or infected regions. amounts of dangerous biological agents that are transported and secondary packaging, the chance for release of signifi- cant levels of respirable particles is very low. 2.2.3 Interrelationships between Biological Deliberate releases of gram to kilogram amounts of a bio- Threats and Transportation Mode logical agent in enclosed spaces (e.g. buildings, passenger com- partments of rail, aircraft, and cruise ships) could contaminate A biological release event that occurs near or in any trans- many people and surfaces, both of which can serve as sec- portation mode can contaminate the roadway or track on ondary sources of contamination. All classes of biological which vehicles travel, transportation vehicles, passengers, agents would cause serious interruption of service if released in and cargo passing through the contaminated area. Factors a passenger compartment of a commercial or public vehicle. In that make a transportation mode more vulnerable to a bio- transportation system passenger compartments, the contamina- logical release include the presence of enclosed spaces, num- tion would be carried to subsequent destinations and could re- ber of passengers, re-suspension of biological particulates, sult in widespread closure of the system. If the passengers did and ease (or difficulty) of decontamination. These factors not detect the initial event it would be many days before au- and other vulnerability factors are summarized in Table 2-10 thorities traced the source to a particular rail, air, marine, or for each transportation mode. mass transit route. The suspicion of release occurring within a TABLE 2-10 Vulnerabilities to Biological Threats for Each Transportation Mode (Note: High more vulnerable (higher risk), Medium medium vulnerability, Low less vulnerable (lower risk)) Biological Highway Rail Transit Aviation Maritime Vulnerabilities Enclosed space Tunnels Tunnels, Tunnels Aircraft Cruise Passenger Stations Stations/ Terminals ships compartments Passenger terminals Terminals compartments Passenger compartments Potential for High for stations, High for stations High for airports High for cruise persistent Low passenger and passenger and passenger ships, contamination compartments compartments compartments terminals Ease of decon- Moderate Moderate Easier Easier Moderate tamination Resuspension of deposited High High High Medium Low contamination HVAC spread Within Within passenger Within airports, Cruise ship, contamination None passenger car compartments, aircraft passenger or station terminals terminals Drinking water Passenger Passenger Passenger Passenger None contamination drinking water drinking water drinking water drinking water Ability to Yes Yes Yes Yes, at Airport Yes, at Dock contaminate other Terminal only modes Agricultural cargo Yes Yes No No Yes contamination Transport pathway Yes (transit Only Airport Docks, harbor, Yes (road) Yes (track) contamination route) canals, rivers